Latina Advocacy Networks
What is a Latina Advocacy Network (LAN)?
The National Latina Advocacy Network is an association of regional Latina Advocacy Networks (LANs) developed in coordination with NLIRH to advance reproductive rights on a local and national level. The National LAN serves as our main way to mobilize Latinas and involve them in national campaigns.
How are Latina Advocacy Networks established?
The LANs are established with a Latinas Organizing for Leadership and Advocacy (LOLA) training. These trainings bring together Latina(o)s who have an interest in reproductive justice and a desire to engage in local grass-roots organizing and national advocacy campaigns.
Where are the Latina Advocacy Networks?
We currently have LANs in New York, Minnesota, Texas, Florida, and Wisconsin.
Who can join a LAN?
LANs are founded by dedicated Latina activists living in the same area, who have attended our LOLA trainings. Group membership is open to all activists, and we welcome and a diverse set of experiences.
What kind of activities have LANs done in the past?
LANs become involved in and support NLIRH campaigns. In addition, each LAN also creates and participates in events and campaigns that makes sense and addresses the needs of their communities. NLIRH provides materials and support.
- Workshops on Emergency Contraception
- Rallies & Marches
- Tabling at Health/Cultural Fairs
- Cafecitos (informal discussions at coffee shops)
- Informational Phone lines
- Advocacy Campaigns (letter writing, lobbying)
- Latina Advocacy Networks
For more information on any of the LANs, please contact Karina [at] latinainstitute [dot] org.
New York City LOLA:
As of January 2011 NYC LOLA began its journey as part of NLIRH’s Latina Advocacy Network family. This new group of NYC activists is dedicated to work inter-generationally to combat violence against women and fight for immigrant rights using reproductive justice as the connecting framework for cross movement building.
Rio Grande Valley, TX LAN
This diverse group of women came together in February 2006 and has been working with local organizations and community leaders to advance women’s issues in the region. Their organizing is centered on increasing access to reproductive health care for all women and their strategic campaigns have involved marches, health fairs, and meetings with local officials. Campaigns they have tackled include obtaining necessary transportation access in rural communities and most notably, mobilizing around supporting Health Care Reform by collecting thousands of signed letters, and making hundreds of calls, and in district visits to representatives. The TX LAN constantly cultivates and expands their base in the Rio Grande Valley now expanding to 15 colonias.Check out their work here and here.
Miami, Florida: Miami International Latinas Organizing for Leadership and Advocacy (MI-LOLA)
This diverse group of women came together in April of 2007 and has since centered their work in empowering women and girls of color to become active and engaged leaders in transforming the structures that impacts their lives and the lives of their families and communities. As part of their reproductive justice work they founded the South Florida Reproductive Justice Alliance (SFL RJA). The SFL RJA is an activist/community organization based group offering an open forum for meaningful and empowering conversations and actions around Reproductive Justice Issues. MI-LOLA’s past events include canvassing in a local mall in commemoration of Women’s Equality Day, hosting a movie screening and discussion on sterilization in the Latina community, an event centered on Health Care Reform and its impact on the Latina Community, self help workshops, and hosting reproductive justice forums on immigration and health disparities. Learn more about MI-LOLA here.
Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota LAN
This group of primarily Latina immigrant women came together in June 2007. They come from a diversity of backgrounds, and are involved in many areas of social service work in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. Past events have included a civic participation event featuring Sen. Patricia Torres-Ray, an event for the cervical cancer campaign on International Women’s Day, an educational event centered on Health Care Reform policy and its effects on the Latino community, hosting workshops on Immigration as a Matter of Reproductive Justice and Domestic Violence as a Matter of Reproductive Justice, and collecting over 500 signed letters in support of including contraception as preventive care in the Women’s Health Amendment as part of out 1st Annual Latina Reproductive Justice Week of Action in 2010.
Two LANs have emerged from our LOLA training in the state of Wisconsin held in September, 2010: one in Milwaukee and the other in Madison. They are the proud recipients of the NAW 2011 Emerging LAN award because since their induction, they have hit the ground running by organizing several community events from educating people on understanding the reproductive justice framework to engaging civically and in grassroots advocacy efforts.
Latinas Organizing for Leadership and Advocacy (LOLA) Alumni:
Alumni from past LOLA trainings, while not always affiliated with a Latina Advocacy Network, play a critical role in advancing the reproductive justice movement – from participating in both local and national policy advocacy to becoming effective spokespeople on reproductive justice issues. LOLA Alumni come from:
- Philadelphia, PA
- Washington, DC
- Charlotte, North Carolina
- Chicago, IL
- Houston, TX
- Albuquerque, NM